Tuesday, May 25, 2010

For all you Grease Monkeys out there....

My parents have owned their own business...auto and tractor parts and supplies....since I was about 8 or 9 years old. We spent alot of "quality" time at the shop and took an active roll in the business, from dusting shelves to waiting on customers, looking up parts, and even some of the book keeping according to the various stages of our capabilities.

One of the things I remember the most about being up there was being dirty and Dad was often greasy from cutting hydraulic hoses, repairing lawn mowers, or helping customers replace car batteries. The single sink only had cold water (that is another story) and a bar of some hard scratchy soap that left your hands so dry and unpleasant smelling you dreaded getting dirty. And let me tell you, while being dirty wasn't a big deal to us, being the girls that we were, we weren't into having dry, cracked hands.

image from: TrueStory.etsy.com

When I was thinking about making another batch of my Gardener's Soap I also had in mind something that would really get down to business with the dirtiest of dirty, the kind I grew up around. And thus, Grease Monkey was born.

Grease Monkey Soap
is the same great formula of the Gardener's Soap, packed with pumice and cornmeal to really go after that ground in dirt. It is also loaded with cocoa butter and plenty of avocado and olive oil to be sure you aren't dry to the bone when washing is done. Scented with a pleasing but not sissy blend of Eucalyptus, Lemon, Peppermint, Tea Tree, and Fir Needle essential oils. I choose to tint this bar black so that you aren't left with a really nasty looking bar after scrubbing off all that grit and grime. And the Monkey??? Well, that is for grins and for my dad!

Whether your dad is the mechanic type, the farmer type, or the artist type....he is going to love getting clean with this bar. Just ask my dad...he's given his seal of approval and that's all the proof I need.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Make Mine Handmade

How many products did you use this morning in the bathroom? Soap, shampoo, conditioner, deodorant, foundation, blush, powder, eyeliner, hair gel......okay, you get the idea. I got to counting one day and I had used nearly 20 products before I even left the bathroom. So I've been trying really, really hard to limit how many things I use everyday and also making a conscious effort to use natural and handmade when I can.

Some of my favorite things are bath and body products and while I make many of them for myself, I do like to try out other products. Time just doesn't allow for me to make everything for myself, nor does space or knowledge. Being part of the Etsy community, I often turn there for those day to day things that I can't seem to go without.

Today I used this beautiful shampoo bar from SwanMountainSoaps. The great thing about it is that it duos as a body bar so there was one less product I needed today. I used a fresh squeezed lemon as a hair rinse so that got rid of the conditioner.

My shower followed up with a homemade body oil with my favorite essential oils- lavender and geranium and handmade deodorant from UrbanEden. I love that this tube is twist up so easy to use, has a super glide, and leaves no white mess on the tail of my shirt (oh it smells nice too!)

A sultry perfume to finish it off from Anhoki and I'm ready for the day!

Today was a make-up free day, but I love the powder foundation and Grapecicle eyeshadow by PureNaturalMinerals and I've thrown out all the commercial stuff (except for a concealer stick that I haven't found a good natural option for--I'm still learning!!)

They are just little things and only a small handful of the wonderful products available, but I know they are better for me and better for my surroundings. I think that puts me at 3 products today, 4 if you count the lemon! So much better than the original 20. I am making improvements, how about you? What are you doing to decrease your consumption?